Thoughts on the iPad

Like a huge number of people, I was highly anticipating the release of the Apple iPad. After watching the announcement, my initial response was ambivalent. It didn’t hit all the notes I was expecting it to. But a few hours later (and, it should be noted, I still have not seen it in person, only watched videos) I have some additional thoughts on it:

  • Given how much I enjoyed using my iPhone as an eBook reader on my last trip, I can only imagine how awesome it will be to use that screen to read books. That being said, the page-turning animation is horrible, and should go away now.
  • Where is the multimedia magazine-reader app? Can I buy a subscription to National Geographic or Harper’s or the Walrus or anything that’s been formatted & optimized for digital reading yet?
  • The form-factor strikes me as all wrong for watching TVs and movies. As several people have noted, it’s 4:3, when virtually all visual media is in widescreen now. Why not make it skinnier and longer to accommodate that?
  • I really hope I can tether it to the iPhone for internet access. I haven’t seen anything saying I can or can’t. But I can’t afford another data plan – so I certainly hope so.
  • I’m not a big mobile gamer, or mobile video-watcher, outside of travel. And I don’t travel much. The idea of watching movies on a tiny screen, in less-than-optimal resolution, with less-than-optimal sound does NOT sound appealing. Except on an airplane, where this screen kicks-ass over the in-seat screens.
  • The idea of loading up iWork and taking that with me whenever I do a presentation is *really* appealing, and I could legitimately see many small offices buying a communal one for that reason. Plus for note-taking during meetings.
  • Why no over-the-air sync of files/music/etc with my main computer? (I ask this about the iPhone too, but with iWork, it becomes a more serious issue)
  • The lack of forward-facing camera is actually something of a deal-breaker for me – because now, when travelling, I’d still need to take my laptop with me for chatting with Leah & Liam at home. So then it just becomes another device to tote, not a replacement.
  • Overall, this seems like a pretty awesome version 1.0. I’m excited to see what apps people develop over the next year. If, say, there was a Coda for iPad, some sort of remote-desktops app & and something like Lightroom (along with some sortof dongle connector so I could upload photos from my camera to my iPad), I would suddenly become very interested in owning one of these.

Your thoughts?